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102 Reviews
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, memorable movie
This is my favourite movie of all time. I grew up watching it. It has a wonderful musical score and the unforgettable song, Bright Eyes. It may scare younger viewers as it is a very dark animation, especially near the end with the fighting (I won't say between whome, for it may spoil the story for those who haven't seen it) however, it is realistic and thats what I like...
Published on 6 Mar 2004 by Silvolf

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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic film, poor DVD
Firstly, let me say that I grew up watching this film and reading the novel and from that perspective this is a must-see film, beautifully made with a moving soundtrack.
However, the presentation on DVD is awful. The menus are shabby and there are no special features, not even a trailer. But this is not the worst aspect. The transfer is woeful. Immediately you notice...
Published on 4 Jun 2004 by STEVEN HOLT


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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, memorable movie, 6 Mar 2004
This review is from: Watership Down [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
This is my favourite movie of all time. I grew up watching it. It has a wonderful musical score and the unforgettable song, Bright Eyes. It may scare younger viewers as it is a very dark animation, especially near the end with the fighting (I won't say between whome, for it may spoil the story for those who haven't seen it) however, it is realistic and thats what I like about it. There is blood shed and there are deaths but it makes a change from all those animated films where the characters fight and clearly don't have a mark on them. I recommend it to everyone who has enjoyed the book or just has an interest in unusual animations. A great movie!
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55 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars watership down - fantastic film, 21 Dec 2005
By 
Soph (shropshire, england) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Watership Down (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
When i was a small child, I used to watch this film over and over again as an enchanting, exciting tale about a little group of bunnies that went on a big adventure, not really understanding what it was all about. But it was only just recently when it was on TV that i realised what a truly fantastic film this is, it can be looked at in so many different ways and have lots of different meanings. The animation is scetchy but I think that it all adds to the raw, honest beauty of this film. Some may decide thats its too violent and disturbing for little ones but never really noticed it as a child myself.
I would reccomend Watership Down to anybody, if your looking for a deep and interesting film or even just a story about a big adventure, this is it.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, just beautiful, 8 Aug 2005
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It may look cute and fluffy but the story of a bunch of rabbits looking for a home is told in a bloody and dark way. This film really freaked me out as a kid and watching it now many years later I know that it is a very nicley animated movie with a moving music track and memorable bunny characters. A classic that shoud'nt be missed. Oh, not for small children ( blood ).
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, but NOT a 'U' Certificate film, 13 Jan 2004
By 
M. D. Smart (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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It's amazing how many people of around my age (thirty-odd) saw this film at the cinema in 1978 and were terrified by it. There's no question that the BBFC made one of it's most incomprehensible errors by passing this film as a 'U' certificate, although I think a 'PG' would be sufficient (or an 'A' as it was back in the 70's). It does contain some surprisingly graphic violence, and the nightmare scenes of rabbits suffocating in their bulldozed warren must have caused many nightmares for young viewers over the years. Just like the book, it's perhaps best appreciated by older children and adults - although it's nowhere near as dark and disturbing as the same team's other Adams adaptation, 'The Plague Dogs' (which could also do with a higher certificate than its current 'PG' rating). The animation is fairly plain but has some standout moments of beauty, and the rabbits are all well animated and superbly voiced, with General Woundwort making a suitably frightning impression. Although the story was much simplified and condensed for the screen, it retains the esscense of Richard Adams' marvellous novel, and he professed himself to be pleased with the results so who are we to argue?
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic, British masterpiece, 28 Jan 2002
By 
J. R. Shilling "Justice" (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
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'Watership Down' is one of the few feature films that we can be proud of. Sticking faithfully to Richard Adam's original script, Watership covers many areas of film genre, including comedy, drama, suspense and tragedy. The supplied voices are a showcase of many of our fine, British talent. Along with a fantastic soundtrack (also tragic at times especially 'Bright Eyes' sung by Art Garfunkel), Watership Down is one of the best animated films of all time.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great film but why call it a Deluxe Edition?, 16 Oct 2007
By 
Dr Evil (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Watership Down (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
'Watership Down' is the original adaption of the novel written by Richard Adams about the exciting and emotional tale of a group of rabbits when they are forced to leave their Sandleford homes when Fiver, who often sees visions of the future, tells them that their warren is in danger from humans. The group is then lead by Hazel and Bigwig as they make their way through the fields of Hampshire as they come face to face with danger from other animals such as rats, foxes, cats, dogs and owls as well as humans and cars. As the story goes on Hazel and the group of rabbits try to rescue some rabbits from a farm; help a bird, who in turn then helps them; join another warren of rabbits and also try to steal does from a much bigger and powerful warren known as Efrafa, leading to a shocking and brilliant finalle.

I've only just recently finished reading the book so it was interesting to see how the filmmakers would adapt this classic novel and I think that they have done a very good job of putting the 480 pages into just under an hour and a half, making subtle cuts and changes along the way. Although this dubbed a children's film, I found it to be quite gruesome and horrifying in parts, with lots of blood and gore, which I could imagine may be quite disturbing for younger viewers and certainly should have had at least a PG certificate rather than it's U certificate.

Why this is a "Deluxe Edition" is beyond me as the special features aren't great. There's no deleted scenes, no "Bright Eyes" music video and isn't a director's cut, it just has a conversation with the filmmakers and a storyboard comparison, which aren't that much fun to watch.

Overall though this is a brilliant film that stays very true to the book with only minor differences and a few characters missing. Definitely worth a watch whether you've read the book or not.
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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic film, poor DVD, 4 Jun 2004
This review is from: Watership Down [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
Firstly, let me say that I grew up watching this film and reading the novel and from that perspective this is a must-see film, beautifully made with a moving soundtrack.
However, the presentation on DVD is awful. The menus are shabby and there are no special features, not even a trailer. But this is not the worst aspect. The transfer is woeful. Immediately you notice the tape hiss. Yes, it's an old movie... but it was made in the 70s, not the 40s! It also looks like a transfer from a VHS video at times. The screen is saturated of colour, and flickers at times. Worse, at times the screen distorts at the top as if the tape was chewed. Unbelievable. Did they lose the original master tape?
Fantastic movie, but Universal should be shot.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful film and music but a poor DVD, 13 Jan 2004
By 
P. Wilkinson "cleanersvenus" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Watership Down [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
I bought this DVD having loved the film when I was a kid. I hadn't seen it for years and the film itself was just as good as I remembered it. The animation is wonderful and the pacing just right for adults and children alike. For me though the most wonderful thing is the soundtrack music. Bright Eyes suffers because of its over familiarity but the musical soundtrack itself is probably my favourite of all time. Keeehar's theme is sublime.
It is a real shame that they didn't take a little time to raise the quality of picture and soundtrack. To me it looked like it could have been copied straight from a VHS copy. The final credit music wobbles terribly at one point. The early scenes have all sorts of anomalies and sparkels and the colour is very washed out.
But if you or your kids have never seen it, it is absolutely essential you buy this anyway.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film like no other., 31 Jan 2007
By 
@GeekZilla9000 "I am completely operational a... (Doncaster, Yorkshire, UK.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Watership Down (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
I have seen this film more times than any other. When I was a kid I watched it every night.

Yes, there is some blood in the film - and some pretty harrowing moments. This isn't a kids film, it is a family film. I know some kids were traumatised by Watership Down, and that the merest snippet of "Bright Eyes" can reduce grown men to gibbering wrecks. I can sort of empathise as the song always makes me cry (I hope nobody I know reads that sentence).

The main thing that really impresses me is the depth of social structure in this film.

The rabbits have a God ("Frith") and a Grim Reaper character. They have social structure where leaders have "Rah" suffixed to their name.

They have a folklore - in short, this film isn't about rabbits, it's about a complex social group who are fighting for survival - they just happen to be rabbits.

This isn't a Disney film, it isn't full of nicey-nicey cutesy rabbit images. It is a film that contains scenes of fighting (often quite realistic) and death. George Lucas has even said that this film was part of the inspiration behind him creating a complex universe.

The musical score is very moving, and if the high emotion of the film doesn't move you then the music will. Art Garfunkel's "Bright Eyes" got to number one, and is one of the most tear-jerking pieces of music I've ever heard.

The animation is fantastic, the imagery beautiful (although one scene annoys me where a rabbit - I think BigWig, but I might be wrong, runs across a field in about 3 bounds and races back within seconds to tell a story of what he saw!!)

Watch this film, wince at bits, cry at bits, and ultimately enjoy.

Afterall, how many animated family films do you know with a seagull that says "p**s off!"!?
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb film, 12 Sep 2007
This review is from: Watership Down (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1978] (DVD)
This is a wonderful film of a brilliant book which I loved watching when I was growing up and which I love watching now when it is shown almost EVERY christmas (although as a 32 year old man I feel mildly embarrased for some reason!)

It depicts nature as it really is and shows the drama of animals struggling to survive in the same way as some people still do.

Although it is violent in a sense (i.e the sense that nature itself can be violent - animals really DO die and kill each other), this realism and respect for nature is what drew me to it so much as a child and now. Children dont like to be cossetted and have the truth hidden from them BUT it probably isnt suitable for younger children BUT I wouldnt let the fact it contains violence stop you from showing it to children who are mature enough. You could be denying them a valuable and enjoyable experience.
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Watership Down (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1978]
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